1996 VENTURI 600 LM-S GT1
A rare, high-performance GT1
The 600 LM-S is the ultimate version of the 600 LM
It has the Le Mans 24 Hours race written into its DNA
Eligible for the Masters Endurance Racing Legends, Endurance Racing Legends and Le Mans Classic
GT CLASSIC by HWM
ASTON MARTIN MASTERS ENDURANCE LEGENDS
MASTERS ENDURANCE LEGENDS USA
ENDURANCE RACING LEGENDS by PETER AUTO
LE MANS CLASSIC
600 LM-S GT1
KEVLAR CARBON FIBRE
PRV 3 LITRE DOUBLE TURBO
600 HP @ 7 200 RPM
HEWLAND 5 SPEEDS
On February 4th 1993, the Venturi 500 LM is presented with the objective of the 24 hours of Le Mans
Indeed, the new regulation allows GT cars to participate in the race, which opens new perspectives for Venturi. The buyers of the 500 LM are sure to benefit from the support of the factory which intends to seize this opportunity to develop its notoriety.
From 1993, no less than seven Venturi 500 LM will be entered in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The chassis numbers are CLM0001 to 7. Only three cars were ready for the preliminary tests. So the cars were not prepared for the race. At the end of the 24-hour round, five cars out of seven managed to reach the finish line, ranked from 23rd to 92nd, which made JM Teissedre write: "Congratulations to Venturi, whose gamble involved more risks than benefits".
Venturi enters a new endurance championship: the BPR
In 1994, the BPR was born. It is a series of endurance races reserved for GT cars. The first race took place on the Paul Ricard circuit on 6 March 1994. Two Venturi 500 LM take the start in the middle of a bunch of Venturi 400 Trophy which complete the field.
Appearance of the 600 LM and strong performance for Venturi
It is during the second race of the 4 hours of Jarama on April 10, 1994 that two 500 LM evolved into 600 LM made their appearance.
The evolutions concern the aerodynamics, with in particular the lowering of the rear spoiler and a new design of the front bumper resulting from the tests carried out in wind tunnel. The gearbox receives reinforced pinions (Hewland DGN), the heat exchangers are modified and the engine is reworked from top to bottom by EIA in order to exploit the new regulations (new intake flanges). Power output was increased to 570 hp at 1.2 bar turbo pressure.
In the Jarama test, the 600 LM of Ferté - Neugarten set the second fastest time behind the Ferrari F40 of Olofsson - Della Noce. The other two 600 LMs qualified in 4th and 6th place. The only Venturi 500 LM entered in this race set the 12th time. There was a big difference in performance between the 500 LM and the 600 LM, which confirmed the factory's choice.
During the third race in Dijon, the pressure of the two turbos of the 600 LMs was increased to 1.3 bars, giving a power of 600 horsepower. The 600 LMs gained in competitiveness and obtained their first international victories against Ferrari and Porsche. In fact, in Dijon, the 600 LMs took the first two places.
In 1994, a 600 LM won the 1000 km of Paris on 29 May 1994, where no less than five 600 LMs took the first six places on the starting grid. In the end, two 600 LMs were on the podium. If the 1994 BPR had included a "manufacturer" classification, Venturi would have won it.
The 1994 Le Mans 24 Hours
Despite the good results of Venturi the previous year, out of the eleven entries, only five cars were retained by the ACO and three cars were substitutes.
After promising tests in May, where the 600 LM of Tropenat - Ferté achieved the sixth best time, the results were not there. The tests in mid-June were even a real hecatomb: in order to reduce fuel consumption, EIA, which prepared the engines for all the teams, had modified the richness of the engines, which broke one after the other. At that time, the factory was not present even if the #39 car was entered in the name of Venturi SA... the latter did not manage to qualify. In the end, six Venturi cars qualified from 15th to 46th place. During the race, the engines broke down and finally one of the two Venturi 400 GTRs saved the honour by finishing in seventeenth place.
In 1995, an evolution of the 600 LM appeared: the 600 SLM
For the 1995 Le Mans 24 Hours, Venturi developed a 600 SLM. The car has a power of 650 horsepower, aerodynamic improvements, new suspensions and a weight of only 1 066 kg thanks to the massive use of carbon Kevlar (the minimum weight imposed was 1 050 kg).
The 600 LM de Lécuyer CLM0003 offered for sale received the last evolutions of the 600 SLM of 1995 and became the factory car. It was renamed 600 LM-S in reference to the 600 SLM.
At the first BPR event at Le Castelet, it managed to qualify in 8th position against some extremely strong competitors. While fighting for a place on the podium, she was the victim of a road accident.
Although it bears the number 3, it is apparently the first example of the 500 LM which will be developed by some great figures of motor sport: Jean Philippe Vittecoq, Pierre Yver, Jacques Laffite or Mauro Bianchi.
In 1996, CLM 0003 becomes the Venturi factory car
It received the evolutions of the 600 SLM of the 1995 Le Mans 24 hours (chassis CLM 0009).
The modifications concern the bodywork as well as the mechanical part. On the outside, it gets the 600 SLM front bonnet with a more rounded shape. Air intakes were installed on the roof and an air extractor was installed under the engine. As for the engine, it received numerous evolutions: a Magnetti-Marelli injection, a static ignition system, the turbo is a Garett F1 with separate waste-gates. The pressure of the turbos is increased to 1.4 bars instead of 1.3 bars. The Hewland DGN gearbox is replaced by the Hewland DGC gearbox, still with 5 gears.
In its SLM configuration, the CLM 0003 has lost 25 kg, its ride height has been lowered, it has better aerodynamic support and power has increased from 600 to 640 hp.
Eligible in several historic series
This Venturi has been acquired in Switzerland by Ascott collection in 2015 and then sold to its current owner in 2016. the engine has been rebut by Ferry Development and it received a new ECU.
This Venturi 600 LM-S is a rare car whose high performances will conquer its next owner who will have the satisfaction of owning a French car whose history is intimately linked to the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Compared to other GT cars of the same period, it has a much lower maintenance cost, which is a real advantage now that it has become eligible for Endurance Racing Legends, Masters Endurance Legends and Le Mans Classic! A return to Le Mans would be very symbolic for the French brand!